Catherine was my mother and a very keen gardener. This post focuses on the garden I grew up in the 60s and early 70s.
The garden was at the back of a large Victorian house in the south side of Edinburgh that went with my father's brewing job.
And this is Catherine posing proudly at the side patio. I can say quite categorically that she would be appalled to see her photograph up here on my blog.
The photos were all taken by my Dad in the late 60s and early 70s long before digital cameras. Apart from photos of the family and holidays he tended to focus on the herbaceous part of the garden where his favourite roses grew. And they had to have a scent....
So there no photos of the other part of the horse shoe shaped garden where my mother tended the fruit and vegetables using organic practices long before they became fashionable. There are no images of the old Victoria Plum tree or the Asparagus bed (one crown - what extravagance) our swing or the tiny gardens full of pink phlox belonging to my sister and I.
We must have been a big disappointment as junior gardeners as we rarely showed much inclination to do anything (except bury an assortment of pets) so Catherine ended up planting our plots with leftover plants such as the dreaded pink phlox!
In the next photo you can catch a glimpse of my beloved garden gnomes that were carefully placed in the flower border each year. There was one on a swing, one reading a book, one with a spade and the last lying about doing nothing very much. They spent their summer half hidden amongst the flowers and then were put away in the garden shed every winter wrapped in newspaper.
Much gardening is about repetition.One of the yearly rituals was hanging up the painted wooden boxes which decorated the patio. They would be put away carefully each winter and then touched up each spring and put out on the patio again to get filled with small pots of annuals or sweet peas.
Wallflowers are a plant forever associated with my mother. Catherine grew her own wallflower from seed and planted them out in the herbaceous border to flower the following spring. Bright yellows and reds mixed in with pink. It was always very colourful. This wallflower growing ritual continued for most of her adult life.
The herbaceous border was mainly of mixed perennials including peonies and delphiniums .
From time to time boys would climb along the back wall to pinch the apples from our tree. These apples never amounted to much and tended to be small and sour.
"That'll give them indigestion" my parents pronounced with some satisfaction.
Bearded irises were also a favourite in this garden. This view was taken from the wall of the garden across the grass towards the back door and the garden shed/ coal bunker.
And lastly.... a photo of Catherine in her later years that I took on a visit to "Barnsdale" Geoff Hamilton's garden in Rutland in the East Midlands.